Ceylan Culture - Shot Tour

With a history spanning over 3000 years, Sri Lanka holds some of world’s oldest cities including Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa; their once glorious townships, palaces, temples, monasteries, hospitals and theaters intricately carved and modeled out of stone lay abandoned and forgotten with time amidst the soaring jungles.

Anuradhapura
The most famed and most exquisite is the Kingdom of Anuradhapura. Sri Lanka’s third and the longest serving capital and one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world is also one of the most sacred cities of World Buddhists. It was the capital of Sri Lanka from the Fourth Century BC up to the turn of the Eleventh Century and was one of the most stable and durable centers of political power and urban life in South Asia.

Sigiriya
This fifth century AD fortress and a water garden displays some of the most futuristic elements of landscaping with some of the oldest murals recorded in the country.

Polonnaruwa
The second most ancient kingdom of the country boasts of irrigation systems that are far superior to those of the and they still provide irrigation water to the farmers in and around Polonnaruwa.

Kandy
The second most ancient kingdom of the country boasts of irrigation systems that are far superior to those of the and they still provide irrigation water to the farmers in and around Polonnaruwa.

PLEASE NOTE:
Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo Sri Lanka will undergo daily maintenance work between the hours of 08:30 to 16:30 (8.30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m.) from the 5th of January to the 5th of April 2017. All flights scheduled to arrive or depart during these times will be affected and will be subjected to a schedule change. Please consult your airline or travel agent with regards to the changes and advise Ceylan Vacations as soon as possible so that we rebook arrival and/or departure transfers. Please note that during this time, your flight may change several times. So make sure to recheck your flight details several days prior to travel.







Highlights

  • Elephant Orphanage
  • 4x4 Jeep safari at Minneriya National Park
  • Sigiriya Rock Fortress (UNESCO World Heritage Site)
  • Elephant Ride
  • Polonnaruwa city tour
  • Dambulla Cave Temple
  • Technical visit to a Spice Garden and Batik Factory
  • 3 Temple in Kandy
  • Temple of the Tooth Relic, Kandy (UNESCO World Heritage Site)
  • Cultural Dance Show
  • Kaleniya temple & Gangaramaya Temple



Itinerary

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You will arrive at the Bandaranaike International Airport and be met and warmly greeted by your chauffeur guide. Proceed to Negombo. Negombo is a characteristic fishing town north of Colombo and is a mere 6 km from the international airport. Set amidst lush groves of coconut palms, it breathes the spirit of the sea and is naturally a sea food paradise. Old - world fishing craft, like the outrigger canoe and the catamaran, bring seer, skipjack, herring, mullet, pomfret and amber jack, whilst lobster and prawn are caught in the lagoon. PM – If you’re not too tired, you could do some sightseeing.

After a hearty breakfast, you will leave for Cultural Triangle. You will visit the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage en-route. The Elephant Orphanage is the home for Elephants who have been displaced or lost from their natural habitat. This is the only such sanctuary in the world. You could watch the beasts gamboling in the water and the young ones being fed their quota of milk from handheld bottles. Continues to Dambulla / Sigiriya Afternoon visit the Minneriya National Park and proceed on a safari. Minneriya National Park consists of 8890 hectares and consists of mixed evergreen forest, scrub areas and is home to Sri Lanka's favorites such as sambar deer, leopards and elephants. The central feature of the park is the ancient Minneriya Tank (built in 3rd century AD by King Mahasena) and a significant feature is the “Elephant Gathering” which happens between July & August when the tanks and other water sources around the area dry out. When this happens the elephants living in the surrounding areas gather at the Minneriya Tank that never runs dry. During this period you could witness around 300 wild elephants at a glance which is a truly amazing sight.

After breakfast visit Anuradhapura (UNESCO World Heritage Site) Visit the ruins of the first capital founded in the 05th century BC here is found the largest number of ancient monuments of a great civilization. Buddhism found its first real home in Sri Lanka at Anuradhapura, and it thus contains some of Sri Lankan Buddhism’s most secret sights. The “Sri Maha Bodhi tree in Anuradhapura, planted from a cutting from the original “Bo Tree” under which the Buddha received enlightenment, continue to draw thousands of Buddhist pilgrims from around the world. The pillars of the brazen palace which once had nine stories, the image of the Samadhi Buddha which is one of the finest pieces of Buddhists sculpture, the twin ponds, guard-stones and the moon-stones are amazing remains of a great civilization. There are also monuments such as Ruwanveli Seya Dagoba with its famous elephant wall from the 2nd Century B.C. and the Thuparama Dagoba from the 3rd Century B.C. Afterwards proceed to Habarana

After breakfast leave for Dambulla and visit Dambulla cave temple. Dambulla Cave Temple is a vast isolated rock mass and it was here that king Valagambahu took refuge in the 01st century B.C. He later turned the caves into a rock temple. Dambulla is a world heritage site and is the most impressive of Sri Lanka’s cave temples. The complex of five caves with over 2000 sq. meters of painted walls and ceiling found here are over 2000 years old and is the largest area of painting found in the world. The caves contain over 150 images of the Buddha of which the largest is the colossal figure of the Buddha carved out of rock and spanning 14 meters. Leave for Kandy. On the way you will be able to visit a Spice garden and batik factory. Thereafter proceed to Kandy. The Sacred City of Kandy is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of Sri Lanka’s most beautiful towns. This cool weathered hill station is Sri Lanka’s most visited place after Colombo. The main attraction of the town is the golden-roofed ‘Dalada Maligawa’. This is where the sacred tooth relic of the Buddha is enshrined. There are also many numerous shrines and temples in and around Kandy where you could see rare paintings, frescoes, and stone carvings. Afternoon sightseeing & shopping in Kandy. Also if time permits, you could witness a very interesting Cultural Dance Show.

After breakfast visit Three Temples. Embekke Devalaya is the best place in Sri lanka, may be in the world to see the finest wood carving work. This Devalaya is dedicated to the the god Kataragama. Gadaladeniaya Temple was build by king Wickramabahu in 1344 during the Gampola Kingdom time. The Lankatilaka temple history runs back to the Gampola Kingdom era. King Buwanekabahu IV has built this temple in 1344 AD. Late afternoon visit the Temple of the Tooth Relic in Kandy. It is located in the royal palace complex which houses the Relic of the tooth of Buddha. Since ancient times, the relic has played an important role in local politics because it is believed that whoever holds the relic holds the governance of the country. Kandy was the last capital of the Sinhalese kings and is a UNESCO world heritage site partly due to the temple.

After breakfast at the hotel visit The Royal Botanic Gardens at Peradeniya where you could treat your eyes to an amazing, wide and rare collection of tropical and temperate, exotic and indigenous flora, and an orchid house with the largest collection in Asia. Thereafter Leave for Nuwara Eliya visiting the famous waterfall called “Ramboda Falls” and a Tea Plantation. Also you would visit a Tea Factory and Plantation where you would see where the world’s famous “Ceylon Tea” is manufactured. Thereafter proceed to Nuwara Eliya Nuwara Eliya is set in the heart of tea-country and is a beautiful town where the British succeeded in creating a replica of the English countryside, with homes in styles from Georgian to Queen Anne. Well-kept lawns with hedges, an Anglican church, a famous golf course and beautiful parks give the place an air of nostalgia. Situated 6,200 feet above sea level, the air is cool and fresh – a serene retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city life. Evening sightseeing in Nuwara Eliya.

After breakfast proceed to Colombo. Visit the Kelaniya Raja Maha Viharaya (Kelaniya Temple) Being just seven miles from Colombo, Kelaniya Raja Maha Viharaya is the most sought after Temple for the Buddhists in and around Colombo. On the Eighth year after the Enlightenment, the Lord Buddha has visited this sacred site, which had been the Third and the last visit to Sri Lanka by the Gauthama Buddha. Later visit the Gangaramaya Temple is a Buddhist temple inclusive of several imposing buildings and is located nearby the placid water of Beira Lake on a plot of land that use to be the hermitage on a small piece of marshy land. The design of the temple is inspired by the ancient forest monasteries such as Anuradhapura and Ritigala. The temple has a museum, a library, a residential hall, a tree storied Pirivena, educational halls and alms hall in its premises. It is designed by Geoffrey Bawa, one of the foremost architects of Asia, with a calm elegance.

After breakfast proceed to the airport OR drop at your selected beach resort for extended stay.

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